Search more than 3,000 biographies of contemporary and classic poets.

Ernest Hemingway


Ernest Hemingway was born on July 21, 1899, in Oak Park, Illinois. An American writer, reporter, and poet, Hemingway is considered one of the most influential writers of the 20th century.

At the age of seventeen, he worked as a newspaper reporter in Kansas City before joining a volunteer ambulance unit in the Italian Army during World War I. During his service, he was wounded while serving at the front, earning decoration by the Italian government. After the war, Hemingway became an oversees reporter for American and Canadian newspapers, covering the Greco-Turkish War and the Spanish Civil War.

He settled in Paris in the 1920s, joining fellow American expatriate writers Djuna Barnes, Kay Boyle, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Gertrude Stein. There, he wrote the novels The Sun Also Rises (Charles Scribner's Sons, 1926), A Farewell to Arms (Charles Scribner's Sons, 1929), and For Whom the Bell Tolls (Charles Scribner's Sons, 1940).

In the 1940s, Hemingway lived in Cuba and then in Europe during World War II. After the war, he wrote The Old Man and the Sea (Charles Scribner's Sons, 1952), winner of the 1953 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the 1954 Nobel Prize in Literature, and the memoir A Moveable Feast (Scribner's, 1964). While most known for his fiction, Hemingway published 88 Poems (Harcourt, 1979), which spanned over thirty years of writing. He died in Idaho on July 2, 1961.

Ernest Hemmingway circa 1917, source: John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston.